Wednesday, August 3, 2011
OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today expanded the ban on outdoor burning to all of Oklahoma’s 77 counties. The Executive Proclamation expands the 45-county burn ban that was put in place on July 14, as the extreme to excessive drought conditions continue to worsen.
“We have just experienced the hottest July on record,” Fallin said. “The predictions of unrelenting extreme heat with no relief in sight make the statewide burn ban necessary.”
Oklahoma Forestry Services, a division of the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry, report increased fire activity across the state. Firefighter fatigue is a growing concern.
Gas and charcoal grilling is allowed provided that it is over a nonflammable surface and at least five feet from flammable vegetation. Unlawful activities under the ban include campfires, bonfires, fireworks and setting fire to trash, grass, woods or other materials outdoors. For a complete list of activities allowed and prohibited view the guidelines for the Governor’s Burn Ban on www.forestry.ok.gov/burn-ban-information.
State Forester and Director of Oklahoma Forestry Services George Geissler asked Oklahomans to continue to be cautious outdoors.
“With these extremely dry conditions we urge the public to use every precaution,” Geissler said. “Fires are starting from simple things like flat tires creating sparks, cars parked in dry grass and discarded cigarettes. We all need to be extremely vigilant.”